Using the Apple Card flavored Suica UI and redesigned Wallet of iOS 12.2 these past few weeks has been weird but instructive. The UI still feels like it dropped into iOS 12 from somewhere else, Samsung One perhaps? But since the Apple Card announcement, I think we are seeing a preview of what’s coming in iOS 13, and Apple Pay Suica Transit Card in iOS 12.2 is the first iteration of a fuller design and feature set for Apple Pay Wallet cards of all types in iOS 13.
Even in the official iOS 12.2 release, Suica Card has an unfinished feel. Early iOS 12.2 beta builds had a 3D Touch feature for transactions that disappeared before the final release but is shown in the Apple Card video. There is also a strange Suica Card info refresh action that does absolutely nothing because in it’s current state, there is no information to pull down from Mobile Suica. Suica Service Mode remains the only way to force refresh Suica balance and transaction information, which is local to the device, if they fail to update automatically. The empty refresh action seems like a placeholder for something coming later: highly detailed transaction and summary updates pulled from the card provider cloud.
So what can we expect for iOS 13 Apple Pay cards and Wallet? A quick look at the Apple Card design shows detailed location aware transaction information, balance due, payment options and information summaries and more. Jennifer Bailey has expressly said that Apple Pay is not about disrupting the credit card industry so I don’t think Apple wants to keep these things exclusive to Apple Card. I expect the WWDC iOS 13 announcement and sessions will unveil new Wallet controls for developers to add those features to Apple Pay Wallet cards.
The more features and information that reside on the Wallet card itself instead of launching an app, the better. It’s a trend I hope Apple will encourage by offering more NFC access and control to 3rd party developers. If NFC is getting major improvements in iOS 13 as Guilherme Rambo says, I think the Apple Pay sessions at WWDC19 will be a good show.
UPDATE: More WWDC19 Wallet analysis